Ukraine prosecutes Russia for falsifying An-124 maintenance
On July 17, 2018, Ukrainian police opened a criminal case against Rosaviation officials and Russian company Volga-Dnepr for falsifying certificates of airworthiness of Antonov 124-100 “Ruslan” aircraft.
Federal Air Transport Agency of Russia (Rosaviatsiya) officials and the German MRO company AMTES, which is part of the Russian Volga-Dnepr conglomerate, are suspected of unlawful actions, according to the Ukrainian newsletter Pravda.
Rosaviatsiya and AMTES are accused of renewing the airworthiness of the An-124-100 aircraft operated by Volga-Dnepr Airlines without supervision of the plane maker, Antonov.
"On July 17, 2018, the National Police of Ukraine entered information into the Single Register of Pre-trial Investigations on the commission of a criminal offense under Part 2, Article 364 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine, on abuse of official position and forgery of documents for the prolongation of the airworthiness of An-124-100 aircraft Ruslan", says Ilyashev and Partners, the law firm representing Ukrainian state-owned plane maker Antonov. “No company in the world, except Antonov, has the necessary experience in maintaining the airworthiness of an aircraft of this class in conditions of continuous intensive operation," the lawyers note.
Rosaviatsiya justified their decision by claiming Antonov increased its maintenance prices to an unreasonable amount following the Crimea crisis, while deliberately delaying repairs, according to Russian media Kommersant.
On May 4, 2018, the State Aviation Administration of Ukraine sent a formal complaint to International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) regarding permits issued for An-24, An-26, An-74 and An-124-100 Ruslan aircraft. The rules of the UN agency state that licensing for aircraft maintenance should be done with the approval of the manufacturer, which was not the case for AMTES.
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